london atelier of representational art

resurrecting time tested skills traditionally passed from one generation to the next

LARA is a well resourced and highly professional atelier, established in 2008 in response to the rarity of rigorous, representational art education. We are unique in the UK in our approach to teaching the most fundamentally important aspects of art: drawing, painting and sculpture – from life.

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The Atelier System

The atelier system is a highly-structured and systematic curriculum which is passed on from tutor to student. It emerged around the seventeenth century and later became the most common method of training painters. Students of differing standards and experience work together, each learning from the other and with the tutor tailoring his critique to that of a student’s individual requirements.

This is an extremely effective way of hastening the process of learning and getting results. Tasks are assigned like building blocks and each task must be completely mastered before moving on to the next.

Sight-size method

Simply put, the artist first sets a vantage point where the subject and the drawing surface appear to be the same size. Then, using a variety of measuring tools (which can include strings, sticks, mirrors, levels, and plumb-lines) the artist draws the subject so that, when viewed from the set vantage point, the drawing and the subject have exactly the same dimensions. When properly done, sight-size drawing can result in extremely accurate and realistic drawings. It can also be used to draw the exact dimensions for a subject in preparation for a painting.

Professional painters will in time, develop an ‘eye’ that precludes the need for measuring devices and plumb-lines, but the observation method itself is not abandoned – instead it becomes second nature.

"Mastering the technique of painting is just the beginning. Deciding what to do with it is the hard part."

Luca Indraccolo, Tutor

LARA’s philosophy supports a return to discipline in art. By employing traditional, time-tested methods, perhaps best described as the grammar of drawing, LARA seeks not to return to the past, but to build upon it.

What you learn at
LARA

LARA provides students and professional artists with the opportunity to perfect their skill. To explore distinctive aspects of their chosen subject through the development of draughtsmanship. Direct study of works and practical understanding of the materials and methods of the artist.

By this means and through the resulting identification of clear artistic objectives, students acquire creative self-confidence, and visual understanding with subtle and precise powers of description. Thus giving the student the confidence to execute their ideas, in order to become a representational artist or pursue any alternative visual medium.

What we teach you to do

Draw

Figure Drawing

Figure Drawing

Figure drawing is the basis of all good draftsmanship and drawing from life is the backbone of LARA’s process.

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Portrait Drawing

Portrait Drawing

Portrait drawing is an integral part of the LARA curriculum and students are encouraged to hire models throughout the program.

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Cast Drawing

Cast Drawing

Cast drawing informs all aspects of the curriculum and is where students learn foundational principals that apply to all aspects of their work.

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Paint

Cast Painting

Cast Painting

Cast painting provides the student with an introduction to working with oil paint and is the first painting stage of the program.

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Figure Painting

Figure Painting

Figure painting presents one of the most significant and difficult challenges posed by the curriculum.

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Portrait Painting

Portrait Painting

The portrait is an integral part of the curriculum and students are encouraged to work with portrait models throughout the program.

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Sculpt

Figure Sculpture

Figure Sculpture

Figure Sculpture can be studied in a two week intensive workshop structure.

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Portrait Sculpture

Portrait Sculpture

Portrait sculpture can be studied on weekend workshops or week long intensives.

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LARA

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